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The Deans' Office

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Message from the Dean

Strengthening Religious Education

We are living in a day that is both wonderful and perilous. In the midst of increasing political polarization, religious disaffiliation, and debates over issues such as gender identity and immigration, many are facing what could be considered an epistemological crisis. There is an anxiety and uncertainty among some about how we can confidently know what is true. At the same time, we are living in what the Apostle Paul prophesied as being “the dispensation of the fulness of times” (Ephesians 1:10). As a vital part of the restoration of “the fulness of his gospel” (Doctrine and Covenants 133:57), the Savior has provided living prophets to provide continuing authoritative revelation to assist us in discerning truth from error.

In June 2019 the faculty and staff of Religious Education received direction from our prophet-leaders titled “Guidelines for Strengthening Religious Education in Institutions of Higher Learning.” This two-page document includes the following direction concerning the role of religious education generally:

“The purpose of religious education is to teach the restored gospel of Jesus Christ from the scriptures and modern prophets in a way that helps each student:

  • Develop faith in and a testimony of Heavenly Father and His ‘great plan,’ the Savior, Jesus Christ, and His infinite atoning sacrifice, and the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; the Prophet Joseph Smith; and the other modern prophets, seers, and revelators.
  • Become lifelong disciples of Jesus Christ, who make and keep covenants, who love God and others, and who are able, willing, and committed to gather Israel on both sides of the veil.
  • Strengthen their ability to find answers, resolve doubts, respond with faith, and give reason for the hope within them in whatever challenges they may face.” (Board of Trustees, 12 June 2019)

At the heart of the truth of what we teach isn’t an abstract set of principles, but a living God, a Heavenly Father who loves us and who has sent his Son. The most important assignment we have is to assist those we teach to come to a knowledge of the Truth—Jesus Christ. How blessed we are to be led and loved by living prophets to guide us through these perilous times. The faculty and staff of BYU Religious Education and the BYU Religious Education Review are committed to following their prophetic direction. Please know how grateful we are to those who support us in this great cause.

Daniel K Judd

The Deans
August 30, 2019 11:33 AM
Dean of Religious Education
Professor of Ancient Scripture
Office: 370D JSB
Phone: 801-422-3290
Contact: Send Message
August 01, 2019 07:10 PM
Associate Dean
Associate Professor of Church History and Doctrine
Office: 370D JSB
Phone: 801-422-3368
Contact: Send Message
November 20, 2019 07:11 PM
Associate Dean
Professor of Church History and Doctrine
Office: 365D JSB
Phone: 801-422-6603
Contact: Send Message

Office Staff
August 01, 2019 07:11 PM
Secretary to the Dean
Office: 370 JSB
Phone: 801-422-2736
Contact: Send message

Lori Soza is the secretary to the dean of Religious Education. In this capacity, she assists the dean in a variety of administrative tasks and duties, including maintaining the dean's schedule. In her role as office manager, she supervises the student receptionists and couriers and also works to ensure the efficient management of the office. In addition, she plans annual socials for the college.
August 01, 2019 07:10 PM
Secretary to the Associate Deans
Office: 370 JBS
Phone: 801-422-2390
Contact: Send Message
August 01, 2019 07:11 PM
Controller
Office: 370B JSB
Phone: 801-422-6149
Contact: Send message

Josh oversees all Religious Education budgets and financial activities, ensuring compliance with University and Church financial policy. He is a member of the University Controller's Council and serves on various subcommittees and focus groups to evaluate and improve financial processes. Josh assists the Deans and Department Chairs in managing Religious Education's resources and works to facilitate the needs of the faculty for funding in support of their teaching and research. Josh was born and raised in La Jara, Colorado and served a full-time mission in the Chile, Santiago West mission. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Recreation Leadership from BYU-Idaho, a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Adams State University, and a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Brigham Young University. Prior to joining BYU Religious Education, Josh worked for several years in public accounting and banking doing tax and audit work. He came to BYU in 2008 to work as an Accountant, and later became an Assistant Controller in both Continuing Education and the Office of Information Technology. Josh is married to Susan McDaniel, formerly Susan Hornberger, of Wainwright, Alberta Canada. They are the parents of five beautiful children and reside in Springville, Utah.